Google Play Games' new nearby multiplayer capabilities make it easier to play with pals

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As if Wednesday’s beefy Nexus devices weren’t already an indicator that Google is paying more attention to mobile gamers out there, now developers can include support for Nearby Multiplayer support in their mobile games.

Google announced the ability in a tweet on its official Android Developers account:

Nearby Multiplayer is a part of the Google Play Games API and it enables developers to more easily create synchronized challenges and cooperative gameplay based on the location of you and your Android-wielding buddy. It can sync two players at the same time in the same game, as long as they’re near one another. It’s similar to the functionality on the Nintendo 3DS.

Why this matters: Google’s new Nexus 6 and Nexus 9 are both two very powerful devices, with the latter sporting a 64-bit Nvidia Tegra K1 processor—the same chip that’s in the Nvidia Shield Tablet, a device geared for gamers. Apple once played up the whole “game with your iPad” schtick, so it’s natural that Google would follow suit. It’s a new era in mobile gameplay, one where even the most casual of gamers might find themselves virtually brawling among one another. Google is simply making it easier for developers to make this happen.

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